1957 Church Survey- Vermont Avenue Baptist

I should sneak a Shaw church in this run of random churches. Vermont Avenue Baptist is at 1630 Vermont Avenue NW.

In 1957 Vt Av was a HUGE church claiming 3,600 members. They had 3 Sunday services with over two thousand congregants showing up on any given Sunday. It was a predominately white collar Black church with 41% living in the urban renewal area. About half the membership lived in the rest of DC. So about 1000 people coming in on Sunday, where did they park?

CS 20 Vermont Ave Baptist by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

1957 Church Survey- Florida Avenue Baptist Church- Random Church not in Shaw

Not in Shaw but it is in LeDroit Park just in front of Shaw. Close.

Florida Avenue Baptist Church sits at 623 Florida Avenue NW. The 1957 Church Survey provides no useful information. See for yourself.

CS 48 Florida Avenue Baptist by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

1957 Church Survey: Southern Baptist Church- Random Church Not in Shaw

When you think Southern Baptist, what comes to mind? A Black church? Probably not, but that’s just what we have here. Southern Baptist Church at 134 L St NW. If memory serves me right, I believe there’s a bus in their parking lot that says “We Love Black People.” The church sits in NoMa so, not in Shaw.

Anyway there isn’t a lot of information in the 1957 survey, except they are a black church, they had a huge membership (1,300 souls), and the church was newish then.

CS 15 Southern Baptist by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

1957 Church Survey: Metropolitan AME- Random Church Not In Shaw

I’m not even going to search for a photo. But do a quick and dirty post for Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church at 1518 M St NW.  In 1957 it was a big church, with 1200 members in 1957, with about 400 showing up on any given Sunday. The professional majority were skilled laborers, followed by Professionals and white-collar members. It was and is, as far as I can tell, still a Black church. It does not give a breakdown but claimed many members lived in the Northwest Urban Renewal area under study at the time.

CS 53 Metropolitan AME by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

Church Survey 1957: St. Mary Mother of God – Random Church Not in Shaw

Okay, another random church not in Shaw but still around. St. Mary is in Fake Chinatown/ Gallery Place at 727 5th St NW. As far as data goes, this is almost useless. They can say 10% of the congregation was Black in 1957. I’d like to know if any of the congregation is Chinese. Because it would be nice to know how less fake Chinatown was in the 50s.

Anyway, here’s the survey.

CS-55-St Mary Mother of God… by on Scribd

Church Survey 1957: Turner Memorial AME- Random Church Not in Shaw

Turner Memorial AME is not in Shaw. It was at 600 Eye Street NW in 1957. It is currently in PG County Maryland. As you may know the synagogue at 6th and I is there, and according to their history page, Turner AME was at 5th and P St (a Shaw church?) and bought the synagogue in 1951. In 2002 Turner AME put the church building up for sale.

Quick look at the survey page, it was a large Black church where half of the members were unskilled laborers. So a working class African-American church. The survey says it was at 5th and D, but the Turner Memorial website says it was founded in 1919 at 5th and P, so let’s go with that.

CS 54 Turner Memorial AME by on Scribd

3rd Annual Health Fair- July 28th

Last year there was a very nice vegetarian spread. I write this as unapologetic meat eater. Anyway, heads up there will be a big ole health fair on the 1600 block of 4th St NW on July 28th.

Health Fair FlierAs I remember there was a professional masseuse last year for the massages. And there is a lot of fair stuff- face painting, moon bounce, etc.

The big deal about the fair is that the three sponsors, 4th St Fellowship, Mt. Sinai, and Masjid Muhammad would all have health fairs at different times. So for the past couple years they combined their powers, to create the biggest Truxton Circle health fair, ever. I’ll be there, mainly to nosh on free vegetarian food.

Church Survey 1957:Church of the Holy City- Random Church Not in Shaw

I have a few of these, churches outside of Shaw but part of the larger Northwest Urban Renewal Project Area. Notable notes are that Church of the Holy City at 1611 16th St NW was a white church in 1957 and kinda small. The congregants who showed up on an average Sunday was 60. Being white, not a lot of members lived in the survey area (the Northwest Urban Renewal Area), half lived in other parts of DC and the other half lived out in the burbs.

CS-57-Church of the Holy City by on Scribd

 

 

1957 Church Survey- Springfield Baptist Church

So I’m bopping to Rick Springfield’s Jessie’s Girl in my head as I type this. The Springfield Baptist Church has nothing to do with the 80s crooner.

Church at P and 6th NWSpringfield Baptist at the corner of P and 6th Street NW, was a steeple church of unknown vintage in 1957, according to its survey entry. I’m not exactly sure what would qualify as a mega-church circa 1957, but Springfield had a large congregation of around 1700 members, 900 of whom showed up on the average Sunday.

So let’s get into the demographic nitty gritty. It is and was a predominately African American church. The occupation spectrum seemed fairly even, a small percentage of professionals, a nice chunk of white-collar workers, some skilled manual and some entrepreneurs.  The largest group were unskilled laborers at 45%, not half but a large percentage.

You might be wondering, was this a commuter church? Yes, no, maybe. Twenty percent lived in the Northwest Urban Renewal Area, which was later shrunk to the Shaw School Urban Renewal Area. There is a mention that about 15% of the membership moved out of the renewal area in the last two years. Seventy percent lived in other parts of the District, in NE and far parts of NW. The far part may have been closer to their former education center at Kansas Avenue and 8th St NW in Petworth. The E.L. Haynes Charter School sits around there now.

CS 14 Springfield Baptist by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

1957 Church Survey: Salem Baptist Church

This doesn’t provide a lot of information.

So unlike the survey pages I really like, this one is fairly sparse. Anyway, today’s feature is Salem Baptist Church at 917 N Street NW in Shaw. It’s a church building on lot 0809, and a residential structure. Looking at PropertyQuest, there’s another lot the church owns on the other side of the main building. The survey does not tell the racial make up. I’m not 100% sure about the major racial make upof it now, but I’ll guess, African American.

CS 11 Salem Baptist by Mm Inshaw on Scribd